NO EMPIRE LASTS FOREVER: Solo Exhibition by Norberto Roldan
TAKSU Singapore, 5 – 26 September 2013

TAKSU Singapore is proud to present ‘No Empire Lasts Forever’, from 5 till 26 September 2013. This series of new paintings trails the artist’s practice in terms of his given predisposition to using found objects in his assemblages and installations. The paintings are composed of found images and found texts. Apart from these paintings being a juxtaposition of image and text, they are also dichotomies of past and present, East and West, colonizer and colonized, civilized and primitive, truth and lies, love and hate, war and peace. The texts were lifted from different sources, mostly from the novel “The Pretenders” by Philippine national artist for literature F. Sionil Jose written more than 30 years ago. Images were grabbed from various on-line archives with the most recent photo dated 10 years ago. These works are neither documentaries nor a historiography and so images and texts are intentionally cross-bred to subvert historical facts giving way to fiction and other accidental narratives.

A three-part exhibition project, No Empire Lasts Forever was preceded by Savage Nationwhich opened last June 8 and closed July 6 in MO Space (Manila) where a 2003 installation “Love White, White Love,” returning home from an extended exhibition tour from Chiangmai, Bangkok, Berlin and Sydney hung as center piece. The same will be featured as a main installation piece in the Singapore exhibition. The Past Is Another Country, the third and last part will open in TAKSU-Kuala Lumpur in the middle of 2014. This trilogy reflects on a society and how through the years people grappled with social, political and cultural changes. Such reflection is provoked by a realization that colonial occupations in general are regarded as philanthropic acts meant to uplift subject populations. That seems to be an irony. But the strangest irony is that no colonizer could possibly rule without the consent and collaboration of the colonized.

NORBERTO ROLDAN (b. 1953, The Philippines) took his Bachelor in Fine Arts at the University of Santo Tomas- Manila, and his Masters Degree in Arts Studies Program at the University of the Philippines-Diliman. He has been included in two landmark surveys of Southeast Asian contemporary art which were New Art from Southeast Asia 1992 by Fukuoka Asian Art Museum curated by Masahiro Ushiroshoji, Hideki Nakamura, and Arata Tani; and most recently Negotiating Home History and Nation: Two Decades of Contemporary Art in Southeast Asia 1991-2011 by the Singapore Art Museum curated by Iola Lenzi, Tan Boon Hui, and Khairuddin Hori. His works are in the collection of Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, Singapore Art Museum, Deutsche Bank, Ateneo Art Gallery, Bencab Museum, Carlos O. Cojuangco Foundation, Patrick Reyno Collection, and private collections in Southeast Asia, USA, and Europe. Norberto Roldan lives and works in Manila. In February 2013, Norberto Roldan was chosen by Guggenheim as one of the artists in No Country: Contemporary Art For South and Southeast, Guggenheim Museum, New York.


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Exhibition runs from 5 – 26 September 2013

Opening reception: Thursday, 5 September 2013, 6.30-10.30pm.
RSVP at by 4 September



TAKSU Singapore
43 Jalan Merah Saga
#01-72 Workloft@ChipBee
Singapore 228115
T: +65 6476 4788
F: +65 6476 4787

Gallery Hours:
Tues – Sat: 10am – 7pm
Sun: 12 – 6pm